Foreign Investment Policy

(1) Is there any foreign equity restriction in Malaysia?

Equity requirements have been substantially relaxed subsequent to the deregulation of the Foreign Investment Committee (“FIC”) guidelines. Notwithstanding the liberalisation, equity regulations are still in place for certain sectors. Companies in such sectors will continue to be subject to equity conditions as imposed by their respective sector regulators.

(2) What are the foreign restrictions for acquisition of property in Malaysia?

(a) Approval is required from the authority for the acquisition of the following, except residential property:

• Direct acquisition of property valued at RM 20 million and above, resulting in dilution of the ownership of property held by Bumiputera interest and/ or Government Agency.
• Indirect acquisition of property through acquisition of shares in company, resulting in change of control of the company owned by Bumiputera interest and/or Government Agency, having property more than 50% of its total assets and the said property is valued more than RM 20 million.

The above is subject to the following conditions:

• The company must have at least 30% Bumiputera shareholding; and
• The company must have at least RM 250,000 paid-up capital.

(b) Foreign interest is not allowed to acquire:-

• Properties valued less than RM 1,000,000 per unit;
• Residential units under the category of low and low-medium cost;
• Properties built on Malay reserved land; and
• Properties allocated to Bumiputera interest in any property development project.

Please refer to the Real Property & Conveyancing section for further information on real property in Malaysia.